‘We know how much time children spend online, and the potential dangers this brings, but we felt that our school community’s understanding of “stranger danger” was outdated in this age of technology.
At the beginning of every school year, the PTA asks the school for a wish list and together we decide what to fund from our pot of money. One of the requests was for the school to have an internet safety day for children and parents.
The school could only afford this for Key Stage 2 pupils and parents but was keen to provide it for Key Stage 1 too, as well as all staff and governors. We unanimously decided to fund the day, donating £500 of the total £900 cost. This came out of our general PTA funds, raised by events such as our summer fair, Christmas bazaar, discos, Mother’s and Father’s Day sales, and various adult social nights. We also sell discounted tickets for attractions local to us and hold a windfall monthly draw (our version of a school lottery).
We used EST E Safety Training in Essex. Throughout the day, children and their teachers participated in age-appropriate workshops, with staff and governors attending to support the pupils. In the evening, parents and carers were invited to a workshop to help them gain awareness and knowledge of where to seek support, what to do if the worst happens, and how to talk to children of all ages about “strangers” on the internet.
We received great feedback from everyone who attended and would highly recommend funding this for a school. We watched parents, carers, staff and children’s jaws drop during this event – it was invaluable. The PTA would definitely fund this again when an update workshop is required.’
Sarnia Noble, PTA Chair, Collingwood Primary School, South Woodham Ferrers, Essex (228 pupils)